From chpater 6 (The Battle for Holiness) of Jerry Bridges’s The Pursuit of Holiness:
The seat of indwelling sin, then, is our deceitful, unsearchable heart. A second thing we should realize is that indwelling sin works largely through our desires. Ever since his fall in the Garden of Eden, man has listened to his desires more than his reason. Desire has come to be the strongest faculty of man’s heart. The next time you face one of your typical temptations, watch for the struggle between your desires and your reason. If you give in to temptation, it will be because desire has overcome reason in the struggle to influence your will. (p.63, 1996 edition)
John Owen said that sin carries on its war by entangling our affections (what I have here called desires) and drawing them away. Hence, said Owen, denying sin must be chiefly directed on the affections. We must make sure our desires are directed toward glorifying God, he said, and not satisfying the lusts of our bodies. (p.64, 1996 edition)
Does this resonate with you, what Bridges says about the struggle between desire and reason? Have you found ways to deny sin, as Owen writes, by focusing on the affections? Please share!
I don’t know how regular this feature will be, but I thought I’d share some quotes from the books I’m reading. I present these with the understanding that I do not necessarily endorse all of an author’s positions in this particular book or in his/her writing in general. These are quotes which I found interesting, provocative, well-written, or worthy of sharing in some other way.
Full disclosure: the links to Amazon.com in this blog post are affiliate links, meaning that I get a small percentage of any purchase you make on Amazon if you make that purchase after clicking through one of these links.